Gong Xiaosheng, China's Special Envoy on Middle East Affairs, receives an interview with Xinhua during his visit in Cairo, capital of Egypt on Nov. 5, 2017. (Xinhua/Zhao Dingzhe)
CAIRO, Nov. 6 (Xinhua) -- Palestine and Israel welcome China's involvement in their peace talks and are ready to work with China to find a solution, Chinese Special Envoy for the Middle East Issue Gong Xiaosheng told Xinhua in a recent interview.
Gong, who arrived in Cairo after his visit to Israel and Palestine, said Israel and Palestine welcome the "four-point proposition" put forward by Chinese President Xi Jinping in July during a meeting with Palestinian counterpart Mahmoud Abbas in Beijing.
The proposition calls for advancing political settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian issue on the basis of the two-state solution, upholding a common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security concept, further coordinating and strengthening the concerted efforts for peace, and promoting peace with development.
Gong revealed that Israel, which previously did not want any other country except the United State to get involved in the Isralei-Palestinian issue, has now changed its attitude and is willing to engage China in the peace process.
All parties expect China to exert even greater positive influence in the Middle East, the envoy said.
He said that scholars and government officials from the three countries believe that President Xi's proposal well demonstrates that China's influence and role in the Middle East are on the rise.
Gong reaffirmed that China is willing to support any initiative as long as it is conducive to the peace process in the Middle East or resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
As for the upcoming peace symposium for Israeli and Palestinian peace activists to be hosted by China, both Palestine and Israel are very positive in their attitudes, said the Chinese envoy.
Gong noted that many hot spot issues have emerged in the Middle East in recent years, including the conflicts in Syria, Libya and Yemen. The Qatari crisis and the Kurdish referendum are the latest additions.
He was referring to the crisis between Qatar and the Saudi Arabia-led Arab quartet which cut diplomatic ties with Doha in June, and the independence referendum held in late September in the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region in Iraq.
However, Gong pointed out that, despite the emergence of new conflicts and crises, the international community should not forget that the Palestine issue remains as the core of the Middle East issue.
While actively promoting peace, all parties should consider such issues as post-war reconstruction, humanitarian aid and local economic and social development, instead of only focusing on the anti-terrorism campaigns and democratization process like the Western countries do, he said.
In addition to seeking a political solution to the Middle East question, there must also be an economic solution to safeguard people's livelihood in the region, the Chinese envoy added.